Wrap whole onions with skin on in foil and roast at 220°C until soft. Once cooked, remove the outer skin, cut the insides into large pieces and place in a pot with butter, thyme and garlic. Cook without colouring. Add
Wash the vine tomatoes, ensuring that they stay intact with the vine. In a separate bowl combine the olive oil with the seeds of the vanilla pod. Gently heat to infuse and brush carefully over the vine tomatoes. Place tomatoes in a wood-fired oven or under a hot grill to blister. Reserve juices for finishing the soup when serving.
Place onion peelings and offcuts on a tray and into a wood-fired oven. Roast the skins until black and charred. You need 8 petals to garnish the plates – reserve any extra for the onion ash oil, unless you have already prepared onion ash powder.
Pull 24 small pieces of focaccia bread without the crust from the loaf and deep fry until golden brown and crunchy. Drain excess oil on paper towels.
Mix together the onion ash powder and add olive oil until the mixture is liquid enough to drizzle. Alternatively, blend the reserved charred onion skins (from the onion ash petal recipe) to create a powder and drop into olive oil.
To assemble, serve each portion of soup with 4 blistered vine tomatoes, 1 onion ash petal, 3 pulled focaccia croutons, a slice of Healey’s cheddar, 3 drops onion ash oil and the reserved tomato/vanilla juices from the blistered vine tomatoes.
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